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Bermuda want strongest team available for Island Games, says Todd

National Academy director Richard Todd hopes Bermuda’s top overseas professionals will return home for this summer’s NatWest Island Games.

With Bermuda hosting the biennial multi-sports event for the first time, the Bermuda Football Association (BFA) are keen to capture the public’s imagination by having a successful tournament.

It remains unclear whether the likes of Nahki Wells (Bradford City) and Reggie Lambe (Toronto FC) will be available for the Games, which takes place from July 13-19. But Todd insists the BFA will do all they can to field their most influential players as they bid to win the Island’s first football gold medal.

It’s understood the Isle of Wight, Guernsey, Alderney, Gilbraltar, the Isle of Man and Jersey’s football sides will not take part in the Games due to the high travel costs.

So far the only teams to have confirmed their participation are the Falkland Islands, Froya and Greenland.

“I think our coach (Andrew Bascome) would like to be able to pick his strongest team,” said Todd.

“I think the BFA has been very understanding when working with the overseas professionals and been mindful not to disrupt them as they try to establish themselves.

“It’s very important for us to put our strongest group on the pitch. We would have loved to have seen what the strongest group could have achieved in Haiti in the Digicel Cup last summer.

“(Our strongest group) would give us a chance of success and that has the knock-on effect of the public getting behind the team. I quite simply say that coach Andrew would love to be able to select his strongest team for (the Island Games).”

Todd believes Bermuda’s national team can “piggyback” off the goal scoring exploits of danger man Wells who helped Bradford reach the League Cup final and the League Two play-offs this season. “We have had some excitement with Nahki Wells with his Bradford team reaching the League Cup final, and we have a chance to piggyback off that,” said the former St George’s coach.

“The England ‘C’ match is another chance for our players to measure themselves against some elite level players and give them a chance to been seen.

“Maybe an opportunity might come from it for one or two individuals.”

The BFA will use the upcoming Bermuda Hogges’ to prepare the national team for the Island Games.

Bascome’s side are also due to play England ‘C’ — a select team made up of English non-league players — on June 4 at the National Sports Centre.

Reggie Lambe

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Published April 24, 2013 at 1:37 pm (Updated April 24, 2013 at 1:37 pm)

Bermuda want strongest team available for Island Games, says Todd

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